When it comes to what we wear, it’s important that we know who makes it and what it’s made of. That said, sustainable fashion is the way to go nowadays! And I will be the first to admit that going into Forever 21 or H&M and buying a ton of clothing is easy and cheap, cheap being one of the main reasons as to why I give those stores my money. I did this for years and years until I decided to do some research of my own.
In fact, if you go back to one of my very first posts on my blog where I talk about my struggles with sensitive skin, I talk about the many products I have found and use that have helped me. I also talk about how I only use organic, vegan, and cruelty-free products, too. Well, this was around the time that I, too, started being more mindful of the clothes I was buying and wearing and became less interested in buying from stores in the Fast Fashion industry.
Because if you look at the label on your clothes, chances are it’s from China. Do a little more digging and you will quickly come to find that the clothes you just bought are contributing factors to the garment pollution and aren’t ethical or sustainable in any way. Oh, and not to mention, the clothes were made by an underage and very underpaid worker who has probably been abused.
Not to say that we are bad individuals for buying clothes in the Fast Fashion industry…
However, luckily there are ways to still feel good and look good while making a conscious decision to not always and only wear clothes that are manufactured in sweatshops with terrible working conditions. We can do so by supporting sustainable (and etical) fashion, instead!
Sustainable fashion can be best defined as —
clothing, shoes and accessories that are manufactured, marketed and used in the most sustainable manner possible, taking into account both environmental and socio-economic aspects. In practice, this implies continuous work to improve all stages of the product’s life cycle, from design, raw material production, manufacturing, transport, storage, marketing and final sale, to use, reuse, repair, remake and recycling of the product and its components.
From an environmental perspective, the aim should be to minimize any undesirable environmental effect of the product’s life cycle by: (a) ensuring efficient and careful use of natural resources (water, energy, land, soil, animals, plants, biodiversity, ecosystems, etc); (b) selecting renewable energy sources (wind, solar, etc) at every stage, and (c) maximizing repair, remake, reuse, and recycling of the product and its components.
From a socio-economic perspective, all stakeholders should work to improve present working conditions for workers on the field, in the factories, transportation chain, and stores, by aligning with good ethics, best practice and international codes of conduct. In addition, fashion companies should contribute to encourage more sustainable consumption patterns, caring and washing practices, and overall attitudes to fashion | green strategy, june 2014
So, now that you are armed with that information and have a better and hopefully clearer understanding as to what ethical and sustainable fashion entails, here are 6 luxury brands that pride themselves on being cruelty-free, ethically manufactured, and/or sustainable. Please keep in mind that because these brands are ethically made and usually using higher quality organic materials, the products are more expensive. However, it’s an investment worth making, because 1) who doesn’t want to be ethical? lol and 2) they are higher quality and more sturdy 😁
1. stella mccartney
I absolutely love Stella McCartney’s products and highly recommend them! All of her products are cruelty-free and sustainable. Though on the pricer side, you can guarantee that when you purchase an item, it has been made with care. In fact, her brand’s mission statement is as follows:
“We are agents of change. We challenge and push boundaries to make luxurious products in a way that is fit for the world we live in today and the future: beautiful and sustainable. No compromises.”
✨Shop Stella McCartney here✨
2. maison de mode
If you like cruelty-free, made in the U.S.A, organic materials, charitable, artisanal, and fair trade then Maison de Mode is the brand for you! Offering a rare and colorful collection, Maison de Mode’s products are all sustainably and ethically made by artisans worldwide. So, if you shop here, know that you’re buying an item that is unique, hard to find, and made with attention to detail, as well as attention to maintaining ethical boundaries in the fashion world! MdM has even created icons, so that consumers know exactly what each product is made up of —
“The MdM icons stand as a beacon for evolution in industry practices and a platform where commerce is a catalyst for ethical resolutions. Look for the icons on our products and become immersed in the new economy of change.”
✨Shop Maison de Mode here✨
3. mara hoffman
Talk about the cutest clothes ever! I must say that I bought the two dresses and the pants immediately after I came across this brand a while back and I am so glad I did. Mara Hoffman hits the nail on the head in terms of offering consumers uniquely made pieces with various options and styles. One pattern may have 3 styles; a dress, a top, and a skirt. How awesome is that!? Because if you’re like me, then you like to buy the same print in various options and Mara Hoffman lets you do just that! Not only are the styles unique, but behind each and every item is a group, usually made up of women, who have taken the time to craft the items. I highly suggest shopping at Mara Hoffman, because you will not be disappointed. I promise.
“We prioritize fair treatment of workers and artisans, and aim to minimize waste and energy usage wherever possible throughout the production of each garment. We regularly conduct in-person factory visits to ensure that the people producing our clothes are paid fairly, treated respectfully, and working in safe conditions. Our team has developed close, long-term working relationships with the factories in our supply chain, and we consider each factory employee to be a member of the Mara Hoffman team. A large portion of our Ready to Wear collections are made in the garment district of New York City and all of our swimwear is made in Los Angeles. When deciding where to manufacture, we consider proximity to raw materials as well as each factory’s individual strengths and skills. For example, we produce our organic cotton styles in India because that’s where our organic cotton is grown…”
✨Shop Mara Hoffman here✨
I came across Sdress a few weeks ago and my immediate reaction was, “Hmmm…this brand is weirdly cool.” Weird in the sense that the pieces have no zippers or buttons. Upon further research, I quickly came to find that the brand SDress prides itself on creating pieces with no buttons or zippers, in an effort to create seamless and more comfortable pieces for women. Being the type of girl that I am to have to try out new things, of course, I bought the dress on the far right and I would be lying if I said I don’t love it and look forward to an upcoming family wedding, where I plan to wear this dress! I highly recommend SDress for every woman, because their pieces are so simple, flattering, and easy to wear with any accessory, shoe, or bag of your choice.
“SDress is made in Italy exclusively with Italian eco-certified fabrics that are manufactured with minimal amounts of water in a carbon-neutral process endorsed by World Wildlife Fund.”
✨Shop SDress here✨
I absolutely love Doen. In fact, it reminds me of Free People, only Doen is ethically made. I purchased the sweater on the left and the cardigan on the right and they are two of my favorite pieces of clothing that I own. No joke. And at first I kept telling myself to not spend the money, but I eventually (and inevitably) caved in and went a little overboard. However, it was well worth it, because Doen does not disappoint. The quality is amazing and the products, themselves, are absolutely to die for. Not to mention timeless. Yes, Doen prides itself on offering consumers with pieces that are timeless, in that they can be worn every day and during every season and for any and every occasion. Score!
“Our packing is 100% recyclable, and our eco-shippers include a minimum of 90% post consumer content. because we believe the customer shouldn’t be responsible for understanding how to correctly recycle items like poly bags, any product requiring a poly bag for transit is removed prior to shipping to the customer and recycled by our team. we are constantly working towards a better solution for polybags/plastic bags – currently testing biodegradable bags with our largest supplier. we are working to participate in production methods that eliminate waste; we only order enough fabric to fulfill our orders, not excess fabric that conventionally would end up in storage or a landfill. we also work to minimize wastage from the cutting-room floor – our children’s clothing offering started as a way to produce garments from what would have been the wastage fabrics from our women’s collection. today, our wastage fabrics from the cutting-room floor are repurposed into small fabric bags and sent to our customers with their purchase. many of our friends and customers have remarked that they repurpose these bags for trips to the farmer’s market and for toy storage.”
✨Shop Doen here✨
6. eileen fisher
If you like minimalistic fashion, then Eileen Fisher should officially be your new one-stop-shop. Simple in design, color, and cut, Eileen Fisher offers consumers a very basic, yet flattering, and honestly adorable, selection of sustainable and ethical pieces that can be worn during any occasion. At first, I didn’t think much of this brand. And then I bought the top on the left and immediately went on to buy more from her. Not only are the products super comfortable, but as I said before, you can dress these pieces up (or down) and you’ll still look and feel great. In fact, you can buy a lot, if not all, of your staple articles of clothing from Eileen Fisher!
“We pledge to use the most sustainable fibers we can lay our hands on. All our cotton and linen will be organic by 2020. And our core merinos will get an ethical makeover: We’ll use wool from sheep that are responsibly raised—on land that is managed with deep concern for the environment. We’re determined to wean ourselves off rayon—TENCEL Lyocell has much better chemistry. And we’re taking a new look at polyester. If it’s recycled, we’re in.”
✨Shop Eileen Fisher here✨
Ladies, I hope you loved this post as much as I loved writing it! And as you all know, I love finding new brands, so please, please, please let me know of other ethical and sustainable brands out there, so that I can try them out!
Thanks for reading. And, as always, love to you all!
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